Sometimes we turn to food for reasons other than hunger. When you stop and think about why you’re eating, like stress or boredom, you can learn to replace bad habits with good ones and help control your weight.
Watch out for triggers that can trip you up, such as:
- Forgetting to plan ahead for dinner
- Keeping your favorite snack in the pantry
- Snacking while watching TV
- Grocery shopping while hungry
When you’re clued in to your eating patterns, you can help reach your weight loss goals. Start by keeping a tracker of everything you eat. Look back at your food tracker from last week. See what you are doing right. Then list things you need to change, like:
- Eating too fast, when not hungry, or if stressed, tired or bored
- Mindless eating when standing or watching TV
- Treating yourself to a snack or coffee drink at a certain time every day
- Always cleaning your plate
- Ordering unhealthy choices from a menu when you’re starving
It’s never too late to stop bad eating habits or to lose the weight gained from them. Even if you have carried bad habits from childhood, start by challenging yourself to break one or two of them and replace them with good habits.
Sources: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; U.S. Department of Agriculture; BlueCross Blue Shield of Texas